Our Perilous, Magnificent, Perilous Future

The establishment narrative in the United States is pathologically negative, with its centerpiece being the climate “crisis.” A generation of America’s youth has been indoctrinated to believe the planet’s ecosystems are on the brink of catastrophic collapse, bringing with it chaos and doom. As if that weren’t enough, Americans are perpetually inundated with panic over disease, racism, gender bigotry, capitalist oppression, and the terrifying rise of white supremacist Nazis. And all of this, every bit of it, is overstated hyperbole, if not complete bunk.

The hidden agenda behind all this doom and panic isn’t really hidden anymore. This is a power grab. A venal consensus among America’s wealthiest elites to further centralize their own power and control. The dynamics of this are well understood by anyone who has already had their Red Pill moment. The over-the-top and coordinated media attacks on Trump, commencing in 2015 and escalating every year, opened the eyes of millions. Additional millions awakened during the COVID lockdown, as everything from school curricula to mainstream public health advice was often revealed to be indifferent, if not destructive, to the interests of normal Americans. Now questioning everything, the momentum of America’s electorate today is in the direction of sanity.

For this reason, we may hope that as the narrative is debunked, the agenda will dissipate as well. Maybe we won’t have another lockdown. Maybe “15-minute cities” won’t turn into high-tech prisons. Maybe rural America and a decentralized farm economy will not only survive but recover their vitality. Maybe we will have school choice, and maybe anonymous cash will survive. Maybe we won’t destroy our energy independence; maybe we won’t end up eating bugs instead of beef. Losing our freedom and prosperity is not inevitable.

But to improve chances for a fundamental realignment of the American electorate—a virtuous cascade of landslide elections—there is a weapon available to Americans fighting the elitist takeover of our institutions that isn’t being wielded nearly enough. Optimism in every permutation imaginable. Joy, anticipation, and unshakable confidence in the future. There are powerful, data-driven counterarguments, based on genuine scientific skepticism, that refute the entire pathologically negative establishment narrative, and those counterarguments must be heard. They must be heard without reservations and without respite. They are the fuel of persuasion. They are contagious. They are transformative.

The world is not in the midst of a climate crisis. There is nothing happening with climate and weather in the world that cannot be addressed through normal investments and adaptation. America is the most inclusive, welcoming nation in the history of civilization. Capitalism, when competition is preserved and monopolies are contained, is the most uplifting economic model ever conceived. Despite the tragic reality of ongoing conflict and hardship around the world, overall there has never been less poverty, disease, and war than today.

To believe that the future may just be more wonderful than we could ever imagine is not fantasy; it is an informed and realistic perspective. And it completely disarms the manipulative narrative of fear. No, we aren’t all in terrible danger, and therefore, no, we don’t have to give up our prosperity and our freedom.

Uncertainty and Peril, Boundless Possibilities

If growing resistance to the doom narrative promulgated by America’s elites may undermine that narrative, destroying it entirely requires an alternative vision. And to do this requires not only the emotions of persuasion—optimism, joy, anticipation, and confidence—but also an embrace of the innovative spirit that has been hijacked by doomers. Technology is not our enemy; its threat is found in the motivations of the people who wield it. The freedom-loving optimist must be willing to wade into the weeds of technology policy. In those weeds, our destiny and our future are going to be decided.

Because the climate “crisis” is the foundational premise upon which America’s elites are systematically implementing a technology-driven police state characterized by perpetual monitoring and rationing of virtually all activity—our food, water, transportation, homes, and businesses—it is there we may focus on critical technology decisions and tradeoffs that are being decided right now.

For example, how renewable energy is sourced and delivered can vary greatly depending on whether it is centralized or decentralized. In California, the state legislature has recently reduced financial incentives for residential rooftop photovoltaics. But that action does not eliminate subsidies; it only means that California’s beleaguered taxpayers and ratepayers will transfer even more billions to giant centralized wind farms and utility-scale photovoltaic installations. Nor is this about practicality. Decentralized photovoltaic systems generate power where it is consumed, reducing the need for massive investment in new high-voltage transmission lines to deliver electricity from remote renewable energy generation sites onto the grid.

Similarly, California’s state legislature forces taxpayers and ratepayers to subsidize utility scale battery farms to buffer and store the intermittent power generated by solar and wind farms. But by adding vehicle-to-grid technology to California’s privately owned EVs, if only 10 percent of California’s automobiles were EVs (a realistic niche), they would be capable of storing over 30 gigawatt-hours of electricity per day. They could be driven to work, charged from the grid during the day when surplus solar power is currently wasted, then plugged in at night to collect surplus wind energy and power residences without relying on grid electricity.

These choices aren’t meant to suggest that renewables can replace coal, oil, gas, nuclear, and hydroelectric power. They can’t, and they shouldn’t. But if renewables are to remain one part of an all-of-the-above energy strategy, then how they are implemented matters a great deal. The choice to decentralize solar, wind, and battery assets into the hands of millions of private small property owners can potentially save billions in subsidies while also distributing ownership.

Another example of how new technology can be channeled in extremely productive ways, or not, concerns food production. We’ve all heard the nightmare scenarios whereby mass food production may transition to protein based on bug tissue or “cultivated meat.” But there are other innovations that ought to have universal appeal. Indoor agriculture, where food is grown in a controlled indoor environment, offers an opportunity to avoid use of pesticides and herbicides. High-value crops, including tomatoes and most other vegetables, can be grown indoors, creating what may be an opportunity for small, decentralized indoor farmers to compete with agribusiness.

It isn’t possible to predict what innovations are coming, much less prescribe in advance the strategies that will be necessary to mitigate the ones that are awful and promote the ones that are awesome. This is why, for example, mandating a massive transition to EVs and “net-zero” risks draining hundreds of billions out of the economy, on the backs of working families, when in a few years a solid-state battery or a breakthrough in solar concentrator technology will render these massive investments in today’s EV and photovoltaic technology completely obsolete. California’s current policies, ironically, betray a lack of faith in the power of innovation.

It isn’t a huge stretch to move from not only believing that civilization isn’t already doomed to also believing we can develop and manage new technology in ways that are almost all going to be good for humanity. And the danger only gets worse—much worse—if we withdraw from the fight.

Human progress has always fitfully advanced, with setbacks along the way that at times lasted for centuries. That doesn’t have to be our fate in this era. We may cure disease, eliminate hunger and poverty, negotiate peace, explore space, extend life, deliver inexhaustible energy and abundant water, nurture wilderness and wildlife, and preserve a decentralized economy where wealth and ownership are broadly distributed among a population in which the vast majority of people enjoy middle-class lifestyles. Things may actually just get better and better. It is possible. It is a choice.

We must find this vision, embrace it, negotiate its particulars, and fight for it. Or it will be defined for us by people who have demonstrated no wish to share the wondrous products of innovation that are just around the corner.

This article originally appeared in American Greatness.

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